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Man Utd’s Maguire brushes off club crisis talk

Manchester United captain Harry Maguire scored as his side came from a goal down to beat Newcastle United 4-1 away on Saturday before dismissing talk of a crisis following their slow start to the Premier League season.

Maguire’s team were behind after two minutes before the England defender equalised with a towering header midway through the second half and late goals from Bruno Fernandes, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Marcus Rashford secured the victory.

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Maguire and his teammates came in for plenty of criticism following their below-par performance in the 6-1 home thrashing by Tottenham Hotspur two weeks ago but the 27-year-old dismissed talk of a crisis.

“It’s funny, three games into the season and it seems like a big crisis. Won two, lost two. There is a long way to go, we have to improve,” he told Sky Sports.

“When you play for this club and get beat at home, we ask questions. We work hard in training, it is a great group and we knew we had to bounce back. I felt it would have been really harsh if we came away with just a point.”

The game at St James’ Park looked to be heading for a draw until United’s Portuguese midfielder Fernandes struck four minutes from time, with two more late strikes putting a shine on the scoreboard for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.

“It was important. Every game in the Premier League we want to be on top. Some games we will not be at our best but we have to do the basics well and in the games we lost we didn’t do the basics well,” Maguire said.

“We are still a young team, but we won’t use that as an excuse. It was disappointing to start like we had, but [it was a] big performance tonight when we needed it,” he added after a tough week in which he was sent off playing for England.

Maguire’s manager agreed, saying Saturday’s win over Newcastle is a sign that United are firing on all cylinders again.

“After the last result, that made this game even bigger. Then we were 1-0 down in two minutes, that made it even more so,” Solskjaer told Sky Sports.

“But we showed great resilience, great character to come back, handled the setback really well and we were led by an inspirational captain.

“We don’t want to use it as an excuse, but we needed preseason. We wanted to get to this international break with more points than we have, but now we know our season started today, because we’ve come up to the speed of the game.”

Manchester United’s second victory of the season left them in 14th place with six points from four games. Solskjaer’s side next take on Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League on Tuesday before a home clash with Chelsea in the Premier League.

“The boys have come together really well. They know we’ve got a tough and difficult month ahead of us and they’re looking forward to every single game,” Solskjaer said.

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